Appeals Court Rules For Ex-Cincinnati Policeman 

Appeals Court Rules For Ex-Cincinnati Policeman 
Posted by FoM on December 17, 1999 at 16:04:08 PT
The Associated Press
Source: Cleveland Live
The state cannot prosecute a former police officer by using his admission to police superiors that he planted drugs on a suspect, an appeals court ruled. 
The 1st Ohio District Court of Appeals on Friday upheld a lower court's March ruling to throw out John Sess' statement. The three-judge panel said prosecutors could not use the statement as evidence to try Sess on criminal charges for the alleged 1984 crime. Sess made the statement when he responded to questions from police internal affairs investigators and could have been fired if he had refused to answer, the judges said. Judge Mark Painter said he issued the ruling because an Ohio Supreme Court ruling on a similar case allows police to grant their officers immunity from prosecution during administrative investigations. But, Painter said, he still has concerns about the case. "I do not believe that police officers should have the power that they had here," Painter wrote. "It is a power ... that allows the police to protect fellow officers from prosecution, even in the face of grievous criminal wrongs by those officers." Warren County prosecutors, who were brought in to handle the case, argued that the state likely would have learned the information independently at a later time. Warren County Prosecutor Tim Oliver did not return a call to his office for comment Friday. Sess was a 24-year police veteran when he applied for a job with a regional drug enforcement unit in 1997. Before taking a lie detector test, he admitted to planting marijuana on a suspect in 1984. Sess gave details after police said they were doing an internal investigation and granted him immunity, which later was withdrawn. He was fired in 1997 and indicted on charges of tampering with evidence and tampering with records. But prosecutors said the state could not proceed against Sess without the benefit of using his admission. Sess is not working as a police officer now, his lawyer, James Perry, said Thursday. Perry declined further comment. Published: December 17, 1999 The Associated Press, 1999 Related Article:Police Actions Breed Cynicism Among Public - 11/22/99
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Comment #1 posted by kaptinemo on December 17, 1999 at 18:17:45 PT
Police searches and your rights
This is one more reason why you should never, under any circumstances, submit to a search unless you are presented with a warrant. Police are trained to 'get chummy' with a suspect to get them to lower their guard. And they are very good at it. And if they detect any nervousness (and who wouldn't be nervous, when a man approaches you wearing 3 pounds of death on his hip and has the license, training and inclination to use it?) they will try to trip you up by asking if they can search your vehicle. As you will learn if you go to the link, unless you are under arrest, or the police have a warrant to search your person or your property, DON'T ALLOW THEM. You will have 'consented' (albeit through intimidation) to give up your rights. *Learn your rights*... or lose the chance to ever use them.
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